Turner's shootout saves, Pepi's winning penalty leads MLS stars past Liga MX stars

Turner's shootout saves, Pepi's winning penalty leads MLS stars past Liga MX stars

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Turner's shootout saves, Pepi's winning penalty leads MLS stars past Liga MX stars

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Matt Turner and Ricardo Pepi are both enjoying dream years, and both continued their outstanding 2021 campaigns by delivering heroics at the 2021 MLS All-Star Game.

Turner made a pair of penalty shootout saves, setting up Pepi to secure the victory by blasting home the winning penalty kick to give the MLS All-Stars the win against the Liga MX contingent.

The Liga MX side drew first blood in the first half, with Cruz Azul striker Jonathan Rodriguez scoring in the 20th minute, beating Pedro Gallese to give the visitors the advantage.

Diego Rossi nearly equalized in the first half in front of his home LAFC fans at Banc of California Stadium, but Club America and Mexican national team defender Jorge Sanchez pulled off an acrobatic goal-line clearance to keep the score 1-0 Liga MX heading into the second half.

It would be another LAFC player that would tie things up, with defender Jesus Murillo heading home a corner kick from LAFC teammate Eduard Atuesta in the 81st minute.

MLS All-Stars coach Bob Bradley eventually inserted Turner and fellow Gold Cup-winning U.S. men’s national team players James Sands and George Bello to partner with Miles Robinson in keeping Liga MX from finding any more goals.

When the match ended 1-1, the All-Star festivities went to a penalty shootout, which became Turner’s time to shine. The New England Revolution goalkeeper denied Mexico striker Rogelio Funes Mori from the spot, bringing back memories of the multiple saves he made on Funes Mori in the Gold Cup final.

Turner also saved a Salvador Reyes penalty to set up Orlando City’s Nani with a chance to clinch the victory, but the Portuguese legend sent his attempt wide of the mark to keep Liga MX in the shootout.

After a Liga MX conversion, the shootout came down to Pepi, who stepped up confidently and blasted a shot off the underside of the crossbar to secure the win for the MLS All-Stars

Turner was named All-Star Game MVP, while Pepi received his share of plaudits for confidently converting the winning penalty.


What did you think of the MLS All-Star Game? Who impressed you the most? Would you like to see MLS stick to this same format, facing a team of Liga MX stars?

Share your thoughts below.

 

 

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